ICE barricades office headquarters ahead of immigration protest: report

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers on Wednesday set up a barricade in front of the agency's headquarters in Washington, D.C., in preparation for an “occupation” protest.

Dozens of activists gathered outside the building to protest the Trump administration’s border and immigration policies, according to the Washington Examiner, which reported that the demonstrators had planned to occupy the headquarters as part of nationwide protests against ICE.

Temporary fencing outside the building and a line of officers blocked the entrance, the Examiner reported, adding that activists chanted and waved signs.

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A spokeswoman for ICE said in a statement that the organization "fully respects the Constitutional rights of all people to peacefully express their opinions."

"That being said, ICE remains committed to performing its immigration enforcement mission consistent with federal law and agency policy," Jennifer Elzea said.

The protest was reportedly organized by Movimiento Cosecha, an immigrant advocacy organization.

ICE has faced increased scrutiny in recent weeks amid implementation of the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" policy toward illegal immigration. The policy led to the separation of thousands of migrant children from their parents.

The family separations sparked intense bipartisan backlash, prompting President TrumpDonald TrumpRealClearPolitics reporter says Freedom Caucus shows how much GOP changed under Trump Jake Ellzey defeats Trump-backed candidate in Texas House runoff DOJ declines to back Mo Brooks's defense against Swalwell's Capitol riot lawsuit MORE to sign an executive order last week halting the practice.

Protests have continued, however, with activists attempting to disrupt ICE's work through "Occupy ICE" protests. One such effort in New York City caused authorities to cancel a series of immigration hearings.

Another protest near an ICE facility in Portland, Ore., forced the agency to temporarily shut down a regional office.